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Nic Ladds 15th Feb 2009 - 9:49

The Red Devils to put Rams through hell

When these two met at Pride Park earlier this season Derby came out 1-0 winners and they are 11/1 in the betting to win by that score line again.

The Rams shocked United in the Carling Cup earlier this season before succumbing 4-2 in the second leg which is at odds of 40/1 to happen again.

Realistically though there should be goals in this encounter as United are spoilt for attacking options and Derby have nothing to lose and are more likely to get something out of the game attacking than packing men behind the ball.

This suggests scores like 3-1 to Man Utd at 10/1 and 4-1 at 16/1 are plausible while a thrilling draw along the lines of 2-2 is available at 14/1.

Nigel Clough finds his Derby side coming into the game on the back of three wins in a row and his side are 8/1 to record another victory while United are available at odds of 2/5 with the draw at 16/5.

Neither side would be overjoyed with a replay so expect this one to just need the one game to get finished.

Since the loss to Derby, The Red Devils have not lost a game and this should be no different. Even if they rest some key players this should still be a facile victory.

Wayne Rooney is out but they can still call on the likes of Ronaldo who is 7/2 to open the scoring along with Carlos Tevez and Dimitar Berbatov who are both 4/1 to score the first goal.

If this is to be high scoring then the likes of Ryan Giggs and Michael Carrick may fancy their chances of getting on the score sheet and are available at 11/4 and 11/2 respectively to score anytime.

With this mass of talent this also brings over two match goals at 5/6 into the list of possible bets along with Man Utd to score in both halves at odds of 4/5.

Derby could easily get on the score sheet as it is likely Edwin van der Sar will be rested and they have managed to penetrate the United back line on the last two occasions these two met.

Rob Hulse could be the most likely beneficiary at 9/1 to score the first goal or 10/3 to score anytime.

The hero of the Carling Cup first leg Kris Commons is 12/1 to repeat his first-goal heroics and 5/1 to find the back of the net anytime during the game.

If you don't fancy United at long odds on then perhaps Man Utd halftime/fulltime at 5/6 will appeal to you with draw/Man Utd at odds of 10/3 or if you fancy Derby to take an early lead before succumbing late on Derby halftime/Man Utd full time is a big looking 22/1.

This should be an entertaining tie at least with United expected to play most of their big guns and Derby are in good form and they should make a game of it.

Alex Ferguson will be aware that United are still battling for silverware on four different fronts but as he nears the possible end of such a sparkling career, you can be sure he will be going for the win to make a near-impossible quadruple start to look achievable.

Man Utd to win 3-1 - 10/1
Carlos Tevez to score first - 4/1

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